Suspected Fulani herdsmen have killed a traditional ruler and five other persons after they invaded Wereng community, Riyom LGA of Plateau State.
The heavily armed militia reportedly disguised as vigilante, took the village by storm around 10 pm on Monday night, October 5 and and went on the killing spree
A source revealed to the media that the gunmen fired several shots into the air to alert and frighten the resident from coming out of their respective houses, adding that in the process a Prince Chungyang Mwandkwom Tenwong waiting to be coronated as the next Gwom Wereng, the traditional ruler of the community was killed in his house.
“At first, we thought that the gunmen were vigilante members because of the way they dressed and passed. But suddenly, they started shooting at everyone in sight, and that was when we knew that the village is under attack,” a villager who gave her name as Grace Choji said.
Names of other persons killed in the attack were given as Pam Bako Pwol (the prince’s cousin), Davou Kwal, Linus Raphel, Mrs VouPam and Miss Evelyn Peter. Three other victims were seriously wounded and are now receiving treatment at the Plateau State Specialist Hospital.
A State legislator, representing Riyom Constituency, Hon. Timothy Dantong, confirmed the incident, describing the killings as barbaric.
He condemned government’s cold shoulder saying that the incident was allowed to occur despite the earlier alarm raised by the Senator and other stakeholders calling on the government and the security agencies to protect the citizens.
He lamented that among those killed was the acting Gwom Wereng, waiting to be installed as the ruler after the demise of his father.
Dantong recalled that there was a rumour prior to the attack that Fulani herdsmen were coming to attack the community, adding that security agencies were informed but nothing much was done to avert the attack.
“There was a rumour prior to that attack that they were coming to attack the community, the security agents were told. Well, they did their best but I don’t think it was good enough to safeguard the community, because as at the time it happened there was no presence of security men in the community. Wereng is not too much a remote area, if they were swift, the attackers would have been apprehended.
“We all know the people that are doing this; the government is not taking drastic action to apprehend them. They are from the immediate community of Mahanga and others, no proactive measures to arrest them,” he said.